Saturday, January 24, 2015

Trip to Gandikota, Belum caves and Tadipatri

Its 24-Jan-2015, we started the day at 4:20 AM. Got our packed lunch and breakfast and water and dresses, we started to drive. This time one of my colleague gave me some idea about how to drive in fog. It actually worked. We crossed Kadiri at 7:00 AM and after that we parked near a deserted place to take some sun rise picture. Then we had breakfast there and drove again. We parked again near a petrol bunk near a village to freshen up. Next we went on following google maps toward Gandikota. Here is a trick. As we were about to reach Gandikota, map told us to take a diversion on left and we did. As we drove for few meters, we saw that it is a village road with the size of just one car. I had some doubt but still went on hoping the road will broaden up. But the road turned worst and we found a person. After we asked him the direction, he thought for sometime and then told to go straight. We went on and then I realized that we are not going in correct road because this road can accommodate just a car but I have seen in pic with bus which is clearly not possible to drive in this road. So asked a lady nearby and she told that it is wrong direction and go back where we came from and go straight from there. We did a U-turn and went back to the highway where we started. There we saw a girl with her mother waiting for bus to come. Ii asked them about the direction and clearly our Google map is confused by now. They told us that we go straight and after sometime we have to turn left and there is a board marking for Gandikota. We drove down slowly to find the board and there we are. Just after few km, we found a big direction board and it is 10 km from there. We drove down and reached Gandikota. There is absolutely nothing. No people, no shop no nothing and not even a ATM. Its a absolutely scenic beauty with wind mills on one side and this beautiful hilly terrain one one side. It is also called as Grand Canyon of India. The very first thing you see a hotel by Andhra Pradesh tourism. We went in to get a room, but sadly they told no rooms are available for the weekend and they told us nearest hotel could be 40 - 60 km away. We thought for sometime and Runai went to speak with that guy again and I called up the number. One guy looks like the manager of the place came to me after that and told me to come in. With some conversation (note that he doesn't understand my language and I don't his) he told us all rooms are booked for Sunday and Monday. But we can stay today but have to check-out by tomorrow morning 8:00 AM. We were ok and then we are in. After freshen up we went to see what they have for lunch at 1:00 PM. They told they have just veg and egg fried rice. We ordered for 2 plates and later we went in and slept till 4:00 PM. After that we drove down to the fort which is just 2 km away and went in. The road inside the fort is just like sharp S, so had to be careful while turning. Inside the fort there is a small village and at the end of the village you get to see all tourist attraction. So we drove till then and parked our car. We walked for sometime and found the place which is known as Indian version on Grand Canyon. It is a nice and beautiful place. Spend good amount of time there and traveled backward to see different buildings like store room for grains, temples and mosques. As it was about to be evening, we returned back and say a small shop which sells juice and chips. Got few things from there and back to hotel. The hotel is nice with each room as a cottage and own terrace. We spend whole evening sitting on terrace and chatting. Night we came down and had dinner what we were suppose to have for lunch and after watching TV for sometime went to sleep.

Its 25-Jan-2015, we got up at 6:00 AM and after packing our stuff we checked-out at 8:00 AM. We went to Jammalamadugu. We had breakfast there in a small place but very nice and tasty food. Next we filled petrol and headed staright to Belum caves. It is such a lovely place. I have never seen a cave like this. The timing is 10:00 Am to 5:00 PM and its well maintained. Its huge inside and one will need min 1 hour to see inside. One advice take torch with you. Plus the cave expects short and thin people inside. If you are tall or fat, you will find yourself in a difficult position. There are proper marking of in and out direction and lights plus air purifier are all installed. I think they have free guide too. We got some very beautiful pictures and videos. After we came out we freshen up and started our journey.

From there we went to Tadipatri. Its is the largest place we found in these 2 days. There we parked and know that there are two temple of Vijayanagara Dynasty. But we don't know which one are they. Had a ice-cream from a place and followed again Google map and landed to a small recent temple. Did a U-turn and followed the other one. Yes this one is the old one and very nice and well maintained one. After spending some time there and after few photographs we came out and meet a person. He gave us some info of the place and gave us the direction for the other one. We walked down to that place and another magnificiant temple. First one is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and second one is for Siva. Then we went to have lunch simple home made food. After that we drove straight to Bangalore crossing Anathapur and reached home at 5:00 PM.

No Pic as SD card was corrupted may be due to excessive usage of it for many years.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Trip to Lepakshi, Penukonda and Puttaparthi

One of our friend told us about this place Lepakshi and we decided to go there.

Its 15-Jan-2015 and we started at 4:20 AM. We packed our breakfast and lunch last evening. So with everything ready we started the day. It was still dark and after we crossed airport toll gate, we had to stop because it was foggy and we couldn't see anything beyond a meter. We parked nearby a tea stall and waited for sometime. I saw few taxi and private cars also halted there. Anyway after wiping windshield we started and this time drove slowly. Within no time we reached Lepakshi morning 6:30 AM. There were nobody on road except few animals and farmers. We parked near Andhra Pradesh hotel and beside that is the famous Nandi bull. After taking some photographs there we had our breakfast and then we asked for temple direction. We walked down to the temple and then decided to go back to car and bring the car here because we have to keep our shoe outside and there are few monkeys around. So keeping the shoe inside is better idea. Anyway we went inside the temple and there hardly few people inside. A priest took us inside and did a puja for us. Promptly after that we went around the temple to take some pic. After couple of pic one person came to us and told not to take pic inside the temple. Anyway the temple is beautiful and the most famous thing about the temple is hanging pillar. If you don't what it is and where you will find it, here is the info. This pillars are similar to rock pillars curved beautifully but they are not touching the ground and stuck to the top rock made roof. I think almost all pillars were made that way back then but now I could only find one. Once you enter the temple, it on 3rd row and 4th column left to you. You can move a piece of paper or anything thin within the base of that pillar. Others I think by now due to maintenance has been fixed with cement.

Next we drove down to Penukonda Fort. Its again a nice place. Once can see a small palace plus jail and water reservoir. If you wish to walk up the hill, you can find a temple. But we looked at each other and then the sun on top of us, we decided to see it from base of the hill rather than going on top the hill.

From there we went to Puttaparthi. Its the holy place for Sai Baba. Inside the town it is heavily crowded but such a small place with big colleges and other things plus a airport. Anyway we both don't like crowded place and this place jam packed with people all around. We went till the end and did a U-turn and back on track to go out of the place. We parked in a quite place and had our lunch and after that headed back to home at 5:00 PM.

No Pic for this blog because SD Card was corrupted I guess due to extensive usage for so many years.